And then the unexpected happens.
You twist your foot. And then you feel a sharp pain in that area. You try to persevere, but you already see one of the outfielders throwing the ball to the first baseman. You run harder but the pain just becomes even worse.
Don't push it.
Sometimes, you just have to learn when to give up. This is especially the case if you are injured. We have been taught that there is honor in persistence. And you will get your teammates nod for taking one for the team.
But always ask yourself, is it worth it? More often than not, the answer is no. You see, pain is your body's way of telling you that there is something wrong with it. So do not try to push harder even if you think you still can. What you may not know is that you are only worsening your condition by trying harder.
When you find yourself injured, stop. It may not feel much at the beginning but it could be something serious, only that you are not aware of the severity of your condition yet. Sit it out. It is frustrating, of course, but do you really want to be sidelined for the rest of the season, even the rest of your career, for just one game?
What if it is your coach who is pushing you to play with an injury? Try to explain to him nicely about your situation, and tell him that you do not want to worsen your condition. Your coach will always understand, so do not worry about it.
Aside from that, have your injury checked by a medical professional immediately. He can tell you how serious your condition is, and if you can get back to the game soon enough. If the injury looks serious, he will recommend you to sit it out until he can perform more tests on you. Heed his advice and take a different role for the meantime: cheer your teammates on.
Once the game has ended, head out home immediately and give yourself a rest. And then after that, have yourself checked further, especially if your doctor recommended it. This will help eliminate false diagnoses and even prevent damaging your body further.
All in all, do not push yourself too hard. You can always save your game for another day and have a longer and more fruitful ahead of you. And remember that there is still life outside of softball. Ask yourself, is the injury worth enduring? More often than not, the answer is one that lies on your common sense: your injury is not worth enduring. Sit it out. It will be for your good after all.
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Softball Tips: Take Your Injuries Seriously